Champion a Lead XBRL Role in your Company

May 19, 2011

Recently, Brad J. Monterio, managing director of Colcomgroup Inc., penned an article in Business Finance Magazine entitled "10 XBRL Myths Exploded" in which he highlighted, and debunked, the following…well, 10 XBRL myths.

  1. XBRL is just one more compliance burden imposed on my organization
  2. XBRL is only for publicly listed and/ or large companies
  3. XBRL is only for financial reporting
  4. XBRL is just a standard chart of accounts
  5. XBRL is too complicated to use or to understand
  6. XBRL doesn't apply to my company
  7. XBRL requires me to report more information
  8. XBRL is something that concerns only the finance team
  9. XBRL is just a regulatory tool
  10. XBRL is a proprietary piece of software

At the conclusion of the article, Monterio recommends that readers become more educated about XBRL and even champion XBRL in their company by exploring various training opportunities.

At WebFilings we believe that external reporting, including XBRL, doesn't have to be difficult. We've created industry-leading solutions, an innovative customer support structure, and a flexible XBRL professional services model, all designed to enable and empower our customers to become self-sufficient, do-it-yourself (DIY) SEC filers...including XBRL reporting. And, it's working! As WebFilings customer Debora Tomlinson, SEC Reporting & Foreign Accounting Manager of Rudolph Technologies, Inc. recently stated, "We filed in XBRL a quarter early and we received outstanding customer service with the few questions that we did have. We perform almost every aspect of our SEC reporting in-house, and Wdesk greatly improved the efficiency of this process."

Our intuitive XBRL features are accessible and accountant-friendly, enabling reporting professionals to seamlessly embrace learning enough about XBRL to meet the SEC's reporting mandate. In addition, our integrated, parallel processing solution environment enables the reporting team to create, edit, and review their text document and XBRL tagging at the same time, in the same solution. This build-in approach is significantly different than the bolt-on model that other software providers and financial printers practice, requiring companies to lock down their text documents prior to XBRL tagging.

Since our platform leverages a single document datamodel, the text document, EDGAR HTML, and XBRL reports are all generated from the same data set. They are inherently synched, eliminating any version control or data synchronization issues. Changes, even key last-minute data updates, flow automatically through all the report—a stark contrast to financial printers' requirement that customers go pencils down with no additional changes up to a week before filing.

There are many XBRL software solutions in the market, but the External Reporting Solution from Wdesk is the industry's first fully-integrated, cloud-based, end-to-end solution dedicated to meeting SEC reporting requirements. With the External Reporting Solution, reporting teams collaborate in real time on their financial reports from accounting close through SEC acceptance—including integrated EDGAR HTML conversion and XBRL mapping and tagging. The built-in approach can help companies save time, prevent errors, and reduce time associated with the compliance reporting process. After switching to Wdesk, several of our customers have actually shaved days and sometimes weeks off of their overloaded quarterly reporting process schedule.

In addition to our innovative solutions, WebFilings provides professional services for our customers to satisfy a complete range of support requirements, from document setup to comprehensive XBRL services. Our support teams include members with a unique combination of advanced technical accounting and SEC reporting experience, as well as technology experts who have helped design the External Reporting Solution from the ground up. Our customer success engagement model is designed to be flexible to meet specific customer needs...whether it's simple guidance, over-the-shoulder support, or a complete outsourced XBRL modeling and tagging engagement.

Complimentary XBRL Resources

Whether you are at the beginning of your XBRL compliance cycle, or have already filed in XBRL and are looking to learn more and improve your XBRL filing process, we have a variety of free resources that can help. If you're one of the readers that Monterio singled out as being interested in learning XBRL or championing an XBRL leadership role in your company, WebFilings invites you to participate in the following training opportunities:

  • XBRL Workshops: Network with other financial reporting processionals by attending a complimentary dinner and educational XBRL seminar… coming soon to a city near you
  • XBRL Webinars: Register for an upcoming XBRL webinar or access our webinar archives
  • XBRL White Papers & Business Briefs: Read what thought leaders at WebFilings have to say about financial reporting trends, technology advances in accounting and a wide range of other topics
Mike Sellberg

About the author

Mike Sellberg is Executive Vice President and Chief Product Officer at Workiva. He is the former EVP and CTO at iMed Studios and the former Divisional General Manager at Engineering Animation, Inc.